Strengthening Democracy Via Direct Primaries; APC Blazes The Trail
Nigeria News takes a look at the direct primaries introduced by the APC as it will affect the future election.
With the new method of direct primaries, many members of the All Progressives Congress will be happier. Not only because the process will give them better opportunity to choose their candidates among so many aspirants, the process will put more money into the pockets of grassroots politicians.
The direct primaries as introduced by the new national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole has been used in Osun State governorship primaries and it worked.
Unlike before when only the delegates chose the candidates, this time, all party members go to the field to elect their candidates and in doing so the monetary gains in terms of inducement flow down to the grassroots.
It is like giving power back to the people and for an unpopular aspirant, money can only do a little. You must be popular even when you are loaded with cash to win the primaries.
In Lagos, it was discussed on Tuesday that the new formula would fly, thus solving the problems of politics of imposition as witnessed for many years.
Delegates were induced while the primaries were conducted to cajole the public that elections actually happened. It led to defections by party members to other political parties several times.
Perhaps, the Peoples Democratic Party and other political parties can take a cue from APC, it will be very fine for Nigeria democracy.
Surprisingly, the national leader of the APC and former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu supported the idea when he met with party members at the secretariat on ACME Road, Ogba, Ikeja on Tuesday.
According to him, the idea would strengthen internal democracy and empower the grassroots politicians to choose their own candidates.
With his support for Direct Primaries in picking candidates for elections, the old man has thrown his weight behind his National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole. And, this, to a son of man, is a very good development.
Unpopular APC Governors will kick against such a policy, which is certain to return authority to the Party, not Governor’s Office as is currently the case.
Tinubu himself may not like the policy. APC lost in some areas in Lagos due to the imposition of candidates opposed by party members. But it is good that Asiwaju has learnt some valuable lessons from the 2015 general elections.
Other South-West APC Leaders, especially the governors should embrace this move to ensure that only aspirants acceptable to the generality of party members are picked as candidates for elections. Besides, governors who often behave like Kings, forgetting that the Party put them there should have a good reward come September.
Good one from the National leadership of APC. Kudos to Asiwaju for embracing this move. However, many believe that there will still be an imposition to some extent and that Tinubu deliberately threw his weight behind Oshiomhole’s formula because he did not want any trouble from the national office of the party for now.